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Vol 58 No 1

Published 6th January 2017


Somalia

Surviving elections and jihad

Calming the controversies of the electoral process will occupy the government. Security will remain precarious across the country

The agonising electoral process has raised as many problems as it has solved. The highly disputed selection of members of parliament – which will lead eventually to the selection of the speaker and then the President – was necessary if the idea of central government from Mogadishu was to survive. But it has been extremely tortuous and drenched in bribery and violence. Most civil servants were not paid for several months last year because the money owed to them had been spent on electoral bribes. Much of the work of whatever administration is eventually installed will consist in justifying the election processes, mollifying the losers in it, and legitimising them as a stepping stone towards one person, one vote democracy. That aim seems as distant as ever.

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